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Thursday Toons







Bill introduced to legalize marijuana in Vermont

Sen. David Zuckerman, P-Chittenden, has introduced a bill this year to legalize, tax and regulate the production, sale and recreational use of pot in Vermont.

But Zuckerman says the timing isn’t right for full legalization this year – though that is his ultimate goal.

“I think this is a building year, more than a likely passage year,” Zuckerman said.

Last year the Legislature decriminalized small amounts of pot. The bill, which went into effect in July, replaced criminal penalties for possession of up to one ounce of marijuana with a civil fine, similar to a traffic ticket.

Gov. Peter Shumlin has said legalization is not a priority this year. The governor, however, is closely watching the regulation and taxation of marijuana in Colorado and Washington, according to the governor’s spokesman Scott Coriell.



New Year's Toons 3- the rest






New Year's Toons 2- revolt

New Year's Toons 1- restart

The 20 Worst Fox News Moments Of 2013

19. The time they aired a segment about how “rap music is seen as a problem” 50 years after the 1963 March on Washington and Martin Luther King Jr.’s “I Have a Dream” speech.

18. When Megyn Kelly declared without any shadow-of-a-doubt that Santa Claus is white.

11. When Fox News ran an article on traditional marriage and then accidentally used a photo of a lesbian couple.

the rest


Thousands march in Hong Kong in escalating battle for democracy


(Reuters) - Thousands protested in Hong Kong on Wednesday pressing China to allow full democracy in the city as a battle intensifies over Beijing's attempts to control the outcome of a planned direct election for the city's leader in 2017.

Beijing had promised direct elections in the former British colony as the goal for 2017, but the devil is in the details of the rules governing who can run.

Pressure has been building between democratic forces in the financial hub, which returned to Chinese rule in 1997, and China's stability-obsessed Communist Party leaders who fear a rival democrat being voted into office.

Protesters at the annual New Year's Day democracy rally shouted slogans demanding full democracy in 2017, with a key condition being the open nominations of candidates so that anyone, including China critics, can run for office.

But Chinese officials and leftist newspapers have rejected that, citing the city's mini-constitution that states all nominees must be endorsed by a 1,200-strong election committee, which is stacked with Beijing loyalists.



3,520 killed by US Drones so far in the GWOT

Tracking U.S. Targeted Killings
by Micah Zenko
December 31, 2013

In January 2013, we released a report that called on President Obama to reform U.S. targeted killing policies in non-battlefield settings. Included in that report was a chart that estimated the number of strikes, total fatalities, and civilian fatalities through the end of 2012. The data was based on averages within the ranges provided by the Bureau of Investigative Journalism, Long War Journal, and New America Foundation. We have updated our chart to display all known U.S. targeted killings in non-battlefield settings from the first one on November 3, 2002, through the end of 2013.


The California GOP's fake health care website

By Jim Hightower, Dec. 31, 2013

In this wicked world of woe, there are hucksters, flimflammers, plain ol' crooks… and Republican members of the California Assembly.

This last bunch of scoundrels went out of their way to monkeywrench the rollout of President Obama's new health care law. Obama's computer geniuses were making a hash of the initial rollout in October, but the sign-up was finally smoothing out – and with any Obama success, GOP lawmakers automatically start tossing monkeywrenchs.

This time, the tool they tossed is a fake website created by California Republican legislators in August to look like the state's official health exchange site, where people can sign up to get coverage under the Affordable Care Act. When things finally got worked out on the national health care exchange in November, the Repubs mailed a pamphlet to their constituents, directing them to the decoy site, calling it a "resource guide" to "help" them navigate the ACA sign up process.

Far from help, however, the faux site is a trap. It's filled with boilerplate Republican propaganda against the law, gimmicks to discourage viewers from even applying for the health care they need, and a rash of distortions and outright lies. There's so much bunkum on the site that its fine print includes a disclaimer saying they don't vouch for "the quality, content, accuracy, or completeness of the information" it provides.


more dirty tricks from the party that invented the term.

Happy New Year, Afghanistan

Upon the occasion of the new year, Afghanistan and the United States have yet to nail down a U.S. troop presence beyond 2014, and the American people have concluded that the 12-year-long war in Afghanistan is not only the nation’s longest but also its least popular.

The two data points are linked. Soldiers who think about such things—and most don’t—will acknowledge that long wars and democracies don’t mix.

When the war in Afghanistan began on Oct. 7, 2001, most Pentagon officials said privately that it would be over in a year or two; some estimated six months. Double that duration for Iraq, launched 18 months later on Mar. 19, 2003. The Taliban and Saddam Hussein were ousted shortly after U.S. troops arrived. What did we do following their ouster that has been worth the added cost in U.S. blood and treasure?

Many families of fallen troops feel their loved one died for something, but they’re not sure precisely what. Many don’t think it was to keep their families safe back home, where, statistically speaking, your chance of dying from malaria is greater than being killed in an Islamic terrorist attack. (If you want to believe that it was those very wars that kept attacks so low, welcome to the military-industrial superiority complex.)

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